3 - Issue 6
This article on Swami's General Hospital at Puttaparthi is written exclusively for you….. read this and tell us what you think by mailing us at [email protected]
Next to Sai Baba's ashram in India is a small Hospital. Sai Baba had it built many years ago to take care of all the people in the ashram and the surrounding villages when they were sick. A few years ago He also built a large, very modern Hospital near the ashram where people can go to have special operations done by expert doctors from around the world. For his 75 th birthday in November, Baba gave us all a present by opening another large Hospital near Bangalore in India .
Can you imagine how sad it would be if you or someone in your family was sick but you had no money to see a doctor or buy medicine to make you well? Many people in India , and other countries too, are very poor and have no money or insurance to pay to see a doctor or go to a hospital when they get sick. Sometimes the doctor is very far away and they must walk or carry the sick person, sometimes for several days, to get help.
Sai Baba wants us all to be happy and healthy. That is why He has built these Hospitals and that is why there is never any cost to be treated at any of His Hospitals. All medicines, visits with the doctor, and even the surgeries are free!
The doctors, nurses, and volunteers in Sai Baba's Hospitals work very, very hard to help all the people who are sick. Sometimes, when there are special festivals at the ashram or we are celebrating Sai Baba's birthday, huge crowds of people come to visit. Sometimes doctors and nurses who are visiting the ashram from around the world are allowed to volunteer in the small Hospital to help take care of the many extra people.
It is never fun to be sick, but if you are - what a blessing to be in a Hospital where the doctors can go directly to Sai Baba to ask for help if they are not sure how to best take care of a patient. Sai Baba, who never went to medical school or even college, always knows exactly what should be done with any patient to make them better. Sometimes He makes Vibhuti for the patient to take as medicine.
I have been very lucky to have the chance to volunteer as a nurse on several of these occasions. I have had many interesting experiences and have learned many things.
The most important thing I have learned is that the most powerful medicine is one that we always have with us - LOVE! Sai Baba wants us to use all our knowledge and training - our heads and our hands -to take care of people. However it is the love, understanding, sympathy, and compassion - our hearts - that can help people feel better and actually get well more quickly. Perhaps you remember when you were small and fell down and hurt yourself. Sometimes a kiss by your mother or father on the spot that hurt was enough to make you forget the pain and send you back to your playing. That is an example of the healing power of love.
Once I helped to care for a young man who was a patient in the General Hospital . He had come to India from a different country to go to school. When he came to the ashram to celebrate Sai Baba's birthday he became very sick. He was in a small room by himself so that none of the other patients would catch what he had. The doctors and nurses were very busy and would bring him his medicine and food and then hurry back to work. His family and friends were far away and couldn't afford to buy airline tickets to come and see him. He was very lonesome and felt very sick.
On the wall above his bed was a picture of Sai Baba. This young man spent most of his day just looking at that picture. When he felt strong enough he would stand on his bed and carefully dust it. One day he noticed that some Vibhuti had materialized on it! He showed the doctor when he came to visit. Soon everyone in the hospital had heard about it and wanted to see it too. Before long his room was filled with people who had come to see the Vibhuti and visit with the young man. He was very happy to have so many new friends and quickly was feeling better and was always smiling. No one got sick from visiting him either!
Perhaps you are thinking of becoming a doctor, nurse, dentist or veterinarian someday. It takes many years of studying and hard work, but your heart already knows how best to make people (and animals!) feel better with love! Do you have a schoolmate or friend who is sick? Maybe you could get permission to visit them and play a game or help them catch up on schoolwork. If that is not possible, maybe you could send them a note or call them and let them know that you care and that they are missed. If your mom or dad is not feeling well, you could help them by keeping your younger brothers or sisters entertained, cleaning up the house or making a simple meal. Just knowing that you love and care about them will make them feel better right away. Even if you cannot think of anything else to do, you can always ask Sai Baba to send His love through you to them. The best part is - whenever you make someone feel better - YOU feel better, too!
(article by Rose Roof from SAI WORLD, Fall 2000, Vol 20, Number 4 )
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